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Facebook Apologises – Can We MoveOn Now?

Henry Elliss
Henry Elliss
Managing Director
6 December 2007

So Facebook founder and all round publicity-magnet (at the moment at least) Mark Zuckerberg has apologised for the recent Beacon "mistake" on the Facebook blog. Ironically the post seems to have become a bit buried by four other blog posts on the same day – perhaps he should spend a bit on some Social Ads to get it seen by all his members? Zuckerberg says:

"Facebook has succeeded so far in part because it gives people control over what and how they share information. This is what makes Facebook a good utility, and in order to be a good feature, Beacon also needs to do the same. People need to be able to explicitly choose what they share, and they need to be able to turn Beacon off completely if they don’t want to use it." (read the full post here)

I’m pleased that Facebook have chosen to admit their mistake and attempt to MoveOn (excuse the pun). As well as making Beacon Opt-in (it had previously only been opt-out) they’ve also added a new magical button which users can press to turn the feature off completely. Interestingly, as well as just turning the feature off, it will give you a list of all the sites that have tried to use your data so far – a nice little piece of information for people that like that sort of thing.

Hopefully now that Beacon is a lot less controversial we can all move on to talking about something else. As a big Facebook fan myself (could you tell?) it’s been quite frustrating seeing the huge amount of negative stories coming from the loud-minority complaining about lack of privacy and the like – Facebook is free to use for goodness sake, if you don’t like it, leave!

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